“My doctor checked my thyroid gland and said that it was fine.” I then asked the client what was actually tested. “Oh, they checked my TSH and said that everything was fine.”
I can’t tell you how many times I have heard this from clients that have obvious Low Thyroid symptoms all across the board. It is curious that most doctors have come to believe that the way to test thyroid function is with a measurement of the TSH level.
TSH stands for Thyroid Stimulating Hormone and it is not a Thyroid hormone at all. It is a Hormone that is released by our Anterior Pituitary Gland when it needs the body to produce Thyroid Hormone for proper function. When there is a drop of thyroid hormone, TSH is released. When there is enough thyroid hormone circulating, then TSH release is halted. Sounds simple.
In order for this mechanism to operate properly it must have certain pathways working properly. The Pituitary must be working well and the body’s feedback mechanisms must be operating too. Both of these critical parts can be interfered with and inhibited.
So really, a measurement of the amount of TSH is more of a Pituitary function test rather than a thyroid test.
If one wants to see how the function of the thyroid gland is going it is important that a ‘Thyroid Panel’ be ordered. A thyroid panel will measure the Pituitary influence (TSH), how much Thyroid Hormone the thyroid is producing (T4, T3) as well as how much thyroid hormone is being converted into the active form (T3). The panel will also test to see if the body is producing any Anti-bodies against the thyroid gland itself. This will detect whether there is an Auto-Immune situation going on. (Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis or Grave’s Disease).
Over the years there has been more and more understanding of what the level of TSH should be.
In 2002 the National Academy for Clinical Biochemistry recommended that serum TSH level should be between 0.5-2.0 uIU/ml. The typical lab has the normal scale of 0.5-4.5 uUI/ml. I have seen ‘normal’ scales for TSH of 0.0-10 uIU/ml about 15 years ago. First of all, there is nothing normal about 0.0.
Someone having symptoms of HypoThyroidism may have their thyroid ‘checked’ by a doctor looking at only the TSH level. The TSH comes back at 3.60 and the person is sent on their merry way all the time being assured that their thyroid is completely normal. “But what about the symptoms?” someone may say.
It is very important that a person ask to have their thyroid hormones checked, not just the TSH level. But, then again, a client or patient shouldn’t have to ask for the proper test to be ordered.
Symptoms of hypothyroidism can be a huge list. Anywhere from: Fatigue, Constipation, Depression, Hair Loss and Sensitivity to Cold to Sleep Apnea and High Blood Pressure.
The thyroid gland and its hormones have such far reaching effects throughout the body it is then considered a master hormone gland.
It is because of this, that many authorities believe that Hypothyroidism is being under diagnosed. The use of only the TSH test is leaving millions suffering from Hypothyroidism without help. This sounds a bit surprising since there seems to be so many cases of Hypothyroidism. I think it is very common.
Having the function of your body tested is paramount to staying healthy and creating a healthy regimen for yourself.
People should be more involved in their own health, particularly if some health problems run in the family. Billions of dollars would be saved. Being proactive towards your health is very empowering and gives you piece of mind.
Learn how to be empowered about your health, today. YourHealthInvestigator.com